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Images 1 & 2 contributed by
U.K photographer Michael Smith.
Butterfly populations are a very good indicator of the health of an area's ecosystem !!
Images 3, 4 & 5 contributed by U.K.
photographer Deborah Lovell.
Small Skippers are insects of mid -summer.
They spend much of their time basking or resting among vegetation, yet they are very skilled flyers, maneuvering through tall grasses.
It is their darting flights with wings shining in the sunlight, that typically alerts observers to their presence. Furter inspection will reveal many more individuals taking nectar, or basking with their wings held in a half-open posture very distinctive to skipper butterflies.
They are widespread in southern Britain and their range has expanded north in recent years.
They prefer open areas with long grass, such as unimproved grassland, road edges, field edges and woodland glades.
They exhibit bright orange or brown wings carried with their forewings angled above their hind wings.
Males have a thin black line through the center of forewing.
* The Essex Skipper is similar but has black tips to the antenna and a scent gland that runs parallel to the forewing edge rather than angled.
This Small Skipper's range includes much of Europe (east to the Urals, including Ireland, Britain and Scandinavia) north Africa and the Middle East.
It is typically occurs where grass has been able to grow tall.
Wing Span: 30mm / 3 cm / 1.15”
The single biggest threat to butterfly survival is habitat destruction!!
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